Friday, 21 April 2017

Niger Tornadoes to beef up team

Coach Abubakar Bala has said that Niger Tornadoes will soon complete the registration process of new players before the April 30th 2016/2017 Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) mid-season transfer window closes.


Coach Bala was speaking to sportswriters after his sides 1-0 win over visiting Kano Pillars FC at the Confluence Stadium, Lokoja, Wednesday.


He was lamenting on the poor conversion of chances his side created during matchday 19 against Kano Pillars and failed to convert them.


Coach Bala said this; “We are creating scoring chances in all our matches but converting them is a problem, therefore we are going to make the best use of the mid-season transfer window to sign players that will help us in solve our scoring challenges.


“We all know it is transfer window, some players are on the move, and on our own part, we need to find better hands to replace the ones that are leaving.


“I may miss the services of two of my regular players to Europe, but for the being, they are still with us. But anyway I have already lined up their possible replacement anytime their deal is finalised”, the former FC Lokoja gaffer added.


On the match against Kano Pillars, Bala did not shy away to talk about the quality in the Sai Masugida side, adding that they have a very experienced tactician in the person of Kadir Ikhana who they as young coaches look up to him as a mentor and father.


“I knew that we are going into a difficult task when we host Kano Pillars, but I told my boys to hold their head, remain calm and not to be carried away with Pillars flare of play. Am happy we won the game”, he said.


The first half of the encounter ended goalless with both teams missing scoring opportunities. However, two minutes into the second half Ebenezer Odeyemi relied on Babawo Ibrahim assist to lash in a powerful drive that caught Yusuf Muhammad in goal for the visitors napping for the only goal of the game.


A golden opportunity came the way of Pillars but Adamu Muhammed had many options to shot the ball past Aliko Mustapha in goal for the Ikon Allah side, but his shot fell directly to the goalkeeper who gathered it without much difficulty.


Coach Ibrahim Musa praised the performance of his boys; he said that they played good football, adding some poor calls denied them the opportunity to get back into the game.


Niger Tornadoes sits 4th on the NPFL log with 30 points as the first stanza comes to an end, while Pillars are 12th with 24 points with one game in hand against struggling Rangers International of Enugu the current league champions.


Meanwhile, Niger Tornadoes has given a four-week break to the team and are expected to resume training on Monday.


Chidebere Ajoku, the club leading goalscorer has moved to Wikki Tourists of Bauchi, and some key players have also indicated interest to move to other clubs which the club is ready to free them if their negotiations are favourable.